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The Anakapalli Experiment: When Judiciary And Police Work As a Team to Reduce Investigation Lapses

The police and the judiciary of Anakapali hold periodical meetings to discuss ways for better coordination to ensure efficient delivery of justice. Organised by Anakapalli Police, these meetings are attended by the Principal District Judge of Visakhapatnam and seven judges of the Anakapalli district. SP Anakapali said that such meetings help guide the police to conduct better investigation, avoiding lapses, and come out with strong case-solving strategy.
Indian Masterminds Stories

Taking a break from routine procedures, the police and the judiciary in Anakapalli have been getting together often to chalk out plans for better coordination between the two in delivering justice. It is said that the judiciary and the police are the two pillars of law. So, when these two pillars join hands for a common goal, the outcome can only be a strong and cohesive justice-delivering unit.

Anakapalli is a newly created district in Andhra Pradesh that has been carved out from Visakhapatnam. And, ever since its formation, the district police and the judiciary have been getting together in coordination meetings. Organised by the Anakapalli Police, these meetings are attended by the Principal District Judge of Visakhapatnam and judges of the Anakapalli district. They discuss all aspects of the criminal justice procedure and the judges guide the police towards better investigation, point out common lapses, coordinating issues, and the challenges ahead. The main idea is to ensure timely investigation into crimes and speedy justice for victims.

Indian Masterminds interacted with 2015-batch IPS officer Gowthami Sali, Superintendent of Police, Anakapalli, to know more about this pathbreaking initiative.

IPS officer Gowthami Sali speaking at meeting

FOR BETTER COORDINATION

In a recent coordination meeting, the judges suggested that investigating officers should visit the courts to become familiar with the judicial system and its processes. They also suggested that police should follow the procedure and produce the accused in the courts in proper time. The Principal District Judge emphasised upon enhancing the level of coordination between the courts and other stakeholders, including police, for strengthening the justice delivery system.

Speaking to Indian Masterminds, SP Anakapalli, Ms. Gowthami Sali said, “We invited the Principal District Judge and other judicial officers of the district to a meeting last month. In criminal justice system, judiciary and police are the most important aspects. We have to coordinate on different things like judicial procedure, Lok-Adalat, undertrial prisoners and trial of the offences. So, for better coordination, we held a meeting with the judiciary stakeholders of the district so that they can guide us on how to do things in better way, be it investigation or producing evidence in court.”

Both sides discussed the matters of mutual interests and agreed to resolve all the problems.

ON ACCOUNTABILITY

Ms. Gowthami also said that such meetings also help provide guidance to the police on how to conduct better investigation avoiding lapses and come out with case-solving strategy. The judges suggested that the police should discharge their duties in a manner that should cause no trouble to litigants. They should also ensure that there is no delay in filing chargesheet and produce witnesses because rendering timely justice to the litigants should be the prime aim. And for this to happen, there should be accountability, too. Police officers should keep in mind that accountability is a necessary part of every procedure, the judges said in the last meeting.

STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION

“We do have such periodical coordination meetings to discuss issues concerning ways and means for efficient and timely rendering of justice to litigants. This time, some other aspects were also discussed, like the infrastructural difficulties faced by the judicial institutions and police at all levels in the district,” Ms. Gowthami said.

No doubt such meetings are necessary not just for better coordination between the judiciary and the police, but also for the protection of the fundamental rights of individuals. Hence, the coming together of the police and the judiciary in periodical meetings are proving to be a boon for the new district of Anakapalli and its people.


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